Four Lady Toppers have been selected to the C-USA All-Academic Team as announced by the conference office on Thursday afternoon, with Sarah Gorham earning a First Team nod and Kaylyn Bryant, Megan Morris and Nicole Roseland each earning a spot on the Second Team.
WKU’s four All-Academic honorees are the program’s most since becoming a member of C-USA prior to the 2014 season, with the Lady Toppers having three representatives in 2014, 2015 and 2016. Both Gorham and Roseland picked up the honors for the second time in their careers, while Bryant and Morris are first-time honorees for WKU.
Among all teams, no C-USA member had more representatives on this year’s team than WKU’s four, which matched Middle Tennessee for the most in the conference. Charlotte sat just behind with three, and Florida Atlantic, Southern Miss and UAB each had two players recognized for their work in the classroom.
Named WKU’s Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year in 2017-18, Gorham capped her WKU career with a flourish as a redshirt senior, finishing with career bests in goals (six) and points (14). One of the most vocal leaders on the team, Gorham fired WKU’s match-winning goals against Evansville, FIU and UTEP this season and was critical in WKU’s 1-1 draw with then-No. 24 North Texas on Oct. 12, scoring for the Lady Toppers as WKU claimed its first point against the Mean Green since joining C-USA.
Often an unsung hero for the Lady Toppers while playing as a holding midfielder for much of her career, Roseland entered her senior season with one career point; despite that, the Altamonte Springs, Fla., native enjoyed the best statistical season of her career in 2018, scoring her first two career goals and adding four assists for WKU. Roseland also played a career-high 1,526 minutes (of a possible 1,620) this season, finishing her career with just under 6,000 minutes played for the Lady Toppers.
A key member of WKU’s back line, Bryant played more minutes (1,585) than every WKU field player except for Gorham this season. A starter in all 17 matches for the Lady Toppers, Bryant came up with two critical plays in WKU’s draws against North Texas and Rice; against the Mean Green, the junior cleared a late shot off the line in the second overtime period to preserve the 1-1 draw, and Bryant scored off a Roseland corner kick against the Owls to cut Rice’s lead to 3-2 in the 62nd minute: WKU would go on to score again 10 minutes later to earn a 3-3 draw.
Finally, Morris also starred along the back line for the Lady Toppers, often making long runs up the wing as a facilitator on offense as well. The senior made 15 starts in 16 appearances this season and tallied all five of her points in C-USA play, scoring a goal at Charlotte and notching assists against FIU, UTEP and North Texas. Under Morris’ watch, the Lady Toppers had three shutouts this season, including a 2-0 shutout of Marshall on Senior Night in her final match on The Hill.
WKU finished the 2018 campaign with a 5-8-4 overall record and a 3-5-2 mark in C-USA matches. For the second straight season, the Lady Toppers finished strong down the stretch, dropping only one of their final six matches while completing an undefeated season at the WKU Soccer Complex for only the second time in school history.
2018 C-USA All-Academic First Team
Julia Grainda, Charlotte
Megan Greene, Charlotte
Ebba Blomqvist, Florida Atlantic
Alex Maxson, Florida Atlantic
Peyton DePriest, Middle Tennessee
Amber Hoot, Middle Tennessee
Iris Achterhof, Old Dominion
Ola Akinniyi, Southern Miss
JoAnnie Ramos, Southern Miss
Kelsey Daugherty, UAB
Sarah Gorham, WKU
2018 C-USA All-Academic Second Team
Jamie Fankhauser, Charlotte
Ashley Seltzer, Marshall
Carolin Englehard, Middle Tennessee
Sydney Navarro, Middle Tennessee
Dominique James, North Texas
Natalie Presedo, UAB
Carleigh Simmons, UTEP
Michelle Cole, UTSA
Kaylyn Bryant, WKU
Megan Morris, WKU
Nicole Roseland, WKU
– @WKUSports –
Currie P. McFayden
WKU Associate Director of Athletic Communications